Summer is an amazing time to be close to family and have fun being outdoors in your backyard! Summer is the time for BBQ’s and swimming and using your imagination in your very own backyard! However, now a days most kids prefer to stay indoors on their electronic devices including video games, phones, iPods, tablets, etc. It’s sad that such technological advancements are causing kids to have to be encouraged to venture outdoors. Luckily here are 37 DIY backyard summer projects you can do in your own backyard that will keep your kids active and outside without coercion! They will be the envy of the neighborhood if you do any one of these great ideas!
1. Build A Fairy Garden – Here they used a bird fountain to make their fairy garden, complete with decorative stones, tiny flower pots, a tiny door, etc. Or if your child isn’t into fairies you can adapt it to their interests. When I was little I was big into Breyer Horses. I would have LOVED to build a miniature stable and pasture to play with my horses. I never would have come inside!
2. Ground Level Trampoline – This is infinitely safer than above ground trampolines! And you don’t need to have that unsightly net! My parent’s trampoline was in a big hole and we would sometimes fill the hole with water so it would splash up as we jumped! Or we would play under the trampoline (only NO jumping if anyone was down there!)
3. Backyard Water Park – Build your own water park in your backyard! I don’t have a link to the instructions but any home improvement store will be able to help you out if you have questions! All you need is some PVC pipes, pool noodles, and sponges connected to a hose! Perfect for a hot summer day!
4. Hula Hoop Croquet – Cut hula hoops in half, then use beach balls to make your own giant game of croquet.
5. Baby Pool Water Fountain – This would be fun for a party, but if I was making it for my kids to play in, I would have the base pool be wider so they didn’t have to watch their heads! Click HERE to find out how to make one in your backyard!
6. Giant Bubble – Using a giant plastic sheet and a fan you can create a super fun giant bubble! Just be careful with this one because plastic can suffocate.
7. Water Slide – Already have a swing set with a slide that your kids rarely use because it get’s too hot sitting in the sun? Give that slide new life by making it a water slide with a sprinkler and a tarp!
8. Toy Car Race Track – This is the stuff little boy’s dream of! What kid wouldn’t LOVE having a race track permanently built into their own yard? Click HERE for instructions!
9. Giant Pillow Quilt – With very basic sewing skills you can connect the corners of pillow cases (The picture shows actual pillows being sewn together but using the pillow cases will allow you to easily remove the pillows for easy washing and storing). This would be awesome for a backyard sleep over or movie night!
10. Straw Bale Swimming Pool – Make your own above ground pool with straw bales, rope, and tarp! Just add water for a summer full of water fun!
11. Host A Picnic Alfresca – Use a low profile table (can be made out of a length of ply-board set on cinder blocks) surrounded by vintage rugs for a new picnic experience!
12. Make A Village Garden – Such a fun and practical thing to do with your children. They can use their imagination in creating a village while you get the benefits of harvesting some of the plants!
13. Butterfly Feeder – There is nothing more fun or beautiful than having a gathering of colorful butterflies in your backyard! Click HERE to find out how to build your very own butterfly feeder!
14. Pool Noodle Swing Set Chains – If you have rusted chains on your swings, you can cover them up with pool noodle segments, which also add a pop of color to brighten up your backyard!
15. Water Balloon Pinata – Fill balloons with water and give your kid a stick! Instead of unhealthy candy they will get showered with cooling water for tons of fun and it waters the lawn at the same time!
16. Sunflower Room – Encourage tall-growing plants, like sunflowers (or you can use any climbing flower) to grow in a circle to create a fun little fort your kids can play with all summer long!
17. Covered Sand Box – Not only does this sandbox have a lid to keep unwanted debris and cats looking for a bathroom out of your kid’s play zone, but the lid doubles as benches!
18. Zip Line – Zip lines are tons of fun and your house would be the place all the kids in the neighborhood would want to be if you had one! I’m sure you can find out how to make it yourself, but I felt it might be safer if you can just buy everything you need HERE!
19. Rope Bridge – This is something that your kids can work on that can build imagination and useful skills! Can you imagine pretending the lawn is lava when you have this in your backyard?
20. Rope Course – Your kids could have hours of fun pretending to be giant spiders in their webs, or spies trying not to touch lasers. It’s amazing what some simple rope can do to inspire kids to use their imagination!
21. Bouncing Bubbles – Regular bubbles can be fun but they break before they even take flight more often than not. Imagine actually being able to play with the bubbles once you blow them! Click HERE for instructions on how to make your own bouncing bubbles!
22. Reading Nook – This little reading nook would be any little girl’s dream! I would have loved to have my own little space outdoors that I could keep my keepsakes in and just be able to hang out in the fresh outdoors and enjoy a book. I would even enjoy this as an adult.
23. Secret Passageway – This one might be for those with a green thumb, but wouldn’t it be fun to create a secret passageway out of some tall hedges that lead to your very own secret garden or swing set?
24. Garden Teepee – Similar to the sunflower room mentioned above, you can make a teepee out of climbing vines or flowers by creating an arbor in the shape you want the plants to grow!
25. Willow Den – Instead of using plants that grow along an arbor you can make a den out of the plants themselves!
26. Mini Golf Course – What is more fun than playing mini golf? Well, playing mini golf after building the course yourself in your own backyard using things you can find in your own home!
27. Root Beer Pong Battleship – This is the kid’s version of beer pong combined with Battleship! Cut cup holders into Styrofoam and float them in water. And the adults can borrow this game after the kids go to bed!
28. Moss Graffiti – Add some interest to a plain wall by encouraging moss to grow to form words! You can have your family motto on the wall and include the kids by letting them add something too, like a hand print! Learn how to make graffiti with moss by clicking HERE!
29. Rock Caterpillar – This would be super fun to do with your kids! Pick out large rocks and let them paint them however they want! You can glue smaller rocks and twigs to create the antennae and legs and stack them in a row! This would be a great project that will bring a smile to your kid’s face every time they see it in your garden!
30. Angry Birds – Create your own life-size game of Angry Birds in your own backyard using cardboard boxes and balloons! So much better than just tapping a screen! You can knock it down with different sized balls, and make rules on how you can throw each type of ball!
31. Water Blob – This is great for people with young kids, or those who don’t have a swimming pool! And it’s not as hard to do as you would think! Click HERE for instructions!
32. Lawn Twister – Instead of limiting yourself to a few people on a small mat, make your entire lawn into a twister mat with spray paint! That way it’ll be big enough for the whole family to play and the landing will be softer when you fall.
33. Outdoor Movie Screen – Make a projector screen out of a drop cloth stapled to a wood frame supported in buckets filled with sand!
34. Cardboard Cars – Have the kids make cars out of cardboard boxes, paper plates, and paint so you can turn your outdoor movie screen into a drive in movie theater!
35. Play House Shed – Have a shed that isn’t in use? Clear out the old junk and furnish it into a new playhouse for the kids!
36. Tire Teeter Totter – Up-cycle an old tire by making it into a teeter totter! Click HERE for directions on how to make this for your kids!
37. Pallet Swing Bed – This swing would be the perfect thing to build once your kid’s grow out of their toddler bed, so you can reuse the mattress!
Your backyard would be the envy of the neighborhood if you had any one of these DIY backyard summer projects! Your kids would beg you to go outside and play, instead of wanting to waste away the day on the couch! And the best part is that summer just barely started so you still have tons of time to create the backyard of your children’s dreams!